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2016 Car of the year Audi A4: The journey

The news has probably already gone viral, but please allow us to renounce that the new Audi A4 has recently scooped the top prize for The Car of the Year at the What Car? Car of the Year Awards 2016.

The older versions of the Audi A4 over the past decade has been somewhat over shadowed by the increased sales on the Audi A5 and A3 on the roads but it still has in many ways helped Audi break through into the huge and well-respected manufacturer it is today.

Launched in 1994, it took the retro Audi 80 as its starting point but it really represented a new start for Audi in terms of design. The concept released a smooth and curvy looks that brought a classy look on the road for the professional drivers reaching annual sales of 1.5 million cars.

Back in 90’s you had to have the cash in the bank to own one but in today’s day and age all you need is a relatively small deposit and you can drive these amazing Audi A4s as personal lease cars for less than £200 per month.

The Audi A4 has come a long way offering a saloon and the Avant estate versions with a range of engines, trims and body styling including the S Line and the S4 and not to mentioning the monster RS4, which perhaps explains why everyone can find one that's just right for them.

All the die-hard Audi A4 owners, fans and car enthusiasts have probably already read about what made the new Audi A4 the car of the year, if you haven’t already done so you could follow the link at the bottom to read more about the car of the year.

The Journey

In this article we celebrate the legend by taking a trip down memory lane to commemorate all the Audi A4s the world has seen in the last 22 years.


The first generation A4 hit the road towards the end of 1994. This all-new look for Audi had been on the drawing board for some years and was launched with a number of options including Audi's famed quattro four-wheel drive system. Engines ranged from 1.6 to 2.8 litre petrol and a 1.9 litre diesel. After some early mechanical problems, Audi soon won everyone over with the build quality of the car.

The Audi A4 came back with a facelift in 1997, with cosmetic changes being accompanied by the minor engine changes but overall the same car it was a few years back.


The next all new A4 arrived at the end of the year 2000. The new engines were characterised by an increase in power and included a 3 litre engine for the first time. Audi continued tinkering with the engines in the years to come and in 2003 introduced the S4 powered by a 4.2 litre V8 engine. The millennium also saw the A4 Cabriolet for the first time with a electro-hydraulic operated roof lowered in under 30 seconds


The next generation Audi A4 came in late 2004, with a whole host of structural, engine and exterior and interior changes. Audi not only retained the S4 but also added the blistering RS4.  This was a game changer for Audi and the drivers that wanted more from the revolutionary engine at the turn of the millenium.

2008 - 2012

Audi released the next A4 early in 2008, boasting improved handling and a longer car to increase rear leg room. The boot size increased too but Audi managed to ensure the weight dropped.

This A4 had a facelift in early 2012, with significant changes to both the exterior and interior and more driver options in the cabin with a sleeker streamlined design and upgraded front grill, headlights and rear lights drawing the attention back after the Audi A5 hype.


Finally we arrive to the Award-winning 2016 version of the Audi A4, a car that just gets better and better. It is slightly larger than the outgoing version but considerably lighter and more agile. Its sharp design brings a more streamlined - but still instantly recognisable - shape, while it packs both more power under the bonnet and more features in the cabin.

What truly sets this new Audi A4 apart is the drive and the technology. The Virtual cockpit is the pinnacle of in car tech with featured controls on the steering wheels toggling back and forth with the navigation and speedometer. What takes the tech forward is the smart phone interactive features that virtually mimics your most commonly used phone apps on your entertainment screen – talking about multi-tasking on the move #safely.

Take a look at our attractive Audi A4 Saloon and Audi A4 Avant Estate deals on personal contract hire.

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Posted on 26th February 2016 at 4:45 PM

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